As promised, here is the start-to-finish rundown on how to do the whole “crispy chicken dipped in spicy sauce” thing. And yes, I am fully aware that the title sucks. I started with “How To Make Dipped Chicken” but that was misleading … you don’t “make” the dipped chicken, you make the chicken and then dip it. If I really wanted to be accurate then “How To Make Sauce And Then Cook Chicken And Then Dip That Chicken In The Sauce” would be the way to go. Unfortunately, most people don’t have monitors wide enough to actually read that. So in a half-assed compromise between legibility and vague accuracy I am sticking with “How To Dip Chicken”. Deal with it.
With that out of the way, let’s run this thing down. The recipes in play here are the True North Chicken Rub, the Basic Chicken For Dipping, and the Diamondstar Halo dipping sauce. If you are not familiar with and of these now is the time to follow the links and check them out. The timeline below is what I consider ideal – yes, sometimes you have to compress things time-wise, I get that. But for this one … make the effort to start it a full day early. The result is worth the extra hassle of planning your meal 24 hours in advance. Trust me.
24 HOURS AHEAD
Make sure you have enough of the True North Chicken Rub
Make a batch of Diamondstar Halo sauce
While that cools, toss your chicken pieces with the rub
Put the sauce and the tossed chicken into the fridge. Wash your hands. And wait for tomorrow.
90 MINUTES BEFORE EATING
Take the chicken out of the fridge. Dredge the chicken pieces with flour and put them on a rack to rest for 30 minutes. Pre-heat your oven / barbeque pit / roaster / whatever to 175 degrees C (350 Fahrenheit if you are being retro).
Strain your sauce – you want to get the bits of sage and rosemary out of there now. They have done their work, from this point on all they can do is get bitter from being reheated. The easiest way to do this is to strain it right into the pot you are going to heat it up in.
60 MINUTES BEFORE EATING
Put the chicken (on a rack) in your cooker of choice and let ‘er rip. If you remember to do so, turn the chicken once at the 30 minute mark.
5 MINUTES BEFORE EATING
Heat the sauce. You don’t want it to boil (that would be bad bad bad) but you want to get it very hot.
Pull out the chicken. As you serve it, dunk each piece completely in the sauce. Just a quick in and out, you want to coat it, not to soak it. Let the extra drip off for a couple of seconds (as long as it takes to say “drip drip drip” is probably ideal) and plate it up. Serve it on a pile of rice if you are eating indoors (the sauce dripping into the rice is heaven) or just plate it beside a pile of really good plain potato chips or nacho chips if you are feeling casual.
Eat. With your fingers. Then get ready to be dipping more pieces, because people are going to want seconds. And thirds. Keep the sauce hot and ready to go until you are sure everyone is done. And remember – only dip pieces as you are about to serve them.
This is one of those deals where it is just as easy to make a lot as a little. So make a lot. Let any undipped leftover chicken pieces cool completely and store them in the fridge. Let the sauce cool completely and put it back in its jar and stick that in the fridge too. When you want another meal, heat however much chicken you want in an oven (not a microwave) at 175C/350F for about 20 minutes loosely wrapped in foil, then open the foil and heat for 10 minutes more. Heat the sauce up and once again just dip the pieces you are about to eat. The sauce can re-cool and re-store and re-heat as many times as you require.
Now. Stop reading and eat some chicken. When you are done I would appreciate it if you take a moment and let me know what you think.